The creation of the Tkuma Ukrainian Institute for Holocaust Studies in Dnipropetrovsk dates back to 1999. At the time it was called the Tkuma Scholarly-Educational Center and it was the first national center for studying and teaching the history of Ukraine’s Jews and the Holocaust.
The institute’s name is derived from a religious moshav – a communal settlement – in southern Israel. Tkuma was established as a kibbutz in early October, 1946. The first residents were immigrants from Eastern Europe who survived the Holocaust. Its name reflects the resurrection of Israel. The Hebrew word Tkuma in fact means “resurrection.”
An important achievement of Tkuma is the creation of the Museum “Jewish Memory and Holocaust in Ukraine.” The opening ceremony of the Museum was the 16th of October 2012 in Dnipropetrovsk. On this date the Tkuma Center was re-named the Tkuma Ukrainian Institute for Holocaust Studies.
The mission of the Institute is forming and strengthening the Jewish national identity, as well as improving Ukrainian-Jewish relations in Dnipropetrovsk and throughout Ukraine.
Today Tkuma is widely known in Ukraine and abroad for its work devoted to Jewish history in Ukraine, the Holocaust, and the problems of international relations. Since its inception it has published many scientific monographs and textbooks, and conducted scientific conferences and educational seminars.
Among the scientific publications prepared by Tkuma Institute are issues of a scholarly journal titled “Holocaust Studies, as well as research on the regional aspects of the Holocaust in the various regions of Ukraine, such as Odessa, Bucovina, and elsewhere.
There are also collections of memoirs. “Memory Revival” is the title of a collective monograph on the history of the Holocaust in Ukraine.
As a research center for Holocaust studies, Tkuma conducts international academic conferences, and provides important research projects on an ongoing basis.
Currently, the most important Tkuma research topic is the phenomenon of Righteous Among the Nations, who saved Jews from Nazi genocide, risking their own lives and the lives of their families.
From June 22-24, 2014 Tkuma hosted a large international scientific conference called “Righteous Among the Nations and Other Rescuers During the Holocaust: Ukraine’s Example in the Comparative Context.”
Scholars and public figures from around the world were invited to the conference.
Organizers included the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine, the Museum of the History of Polish Jews in Warsaw, and other institutions and organizations. Also some Canadians … the Peter Yatsyk Program for the Study of Modern Ukrainian History and Society run by Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta and the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter.
More information about this conference and other Tkuma initiatives can be found at their website.
When in Dnipropetrovsk, please visit the Tkuma Ukrainian Institute for Holocaust Studies. It is located at 15 B Barykabna Street.
— Narrated by Renata Hanynets
Faina Petryakova Centre For Judaica & Jewish Art